I fear that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your minds may be seduced from a complete and pure devotion to Christ.—2 Corinthians 11:3
The second piece of armor that is not tied or fixed to the body but that a Christian soldier has to take up and put on is “the helmet of salvation” (Eph 6:17). The helmet worn by a Roman soldier was usually made of bronze or iron with an inside lining of felt or sponge. In some cases a hinged visor added frontal protection. When a Roman soldier saw an enemy coming, he would take hold of his shield, put on his helmet, take his sword in hand, and stand alert and ready to do battle.
The figure of a helmet immediately suggests to us that this is something designed to protect the mind, the intelligence, the ability to think and reason. Just as the breastplate of righteousness protects us from emotional distress, the helmet of salvation protects us from mental distress. This helmet can help us keep our thinking straight and preserve us from mental confusion.
Has there ever been a time in history when we needed something to keep our thinking straight more than we do now? Politicians vacillate and oscillate between despairing pessimism and unrealistic optimism. Just think of the staggering complexities of the issues we face in our current generation—AIDS, violence, nuclear missiles, international tensions, economic instability, inner-city slums, and so on. The intelligentsia of our day confess to being utterly baffled in dealing with the problems with which human society is confronted. Where can we turn to ease the pressure on our minds? The only answer is God—in the helmet of salvation that He provides.
O Father, I am so grateful that You have provided freedom from that most terrifying of human problems—mental distress. Teach me all I need to know in applying Your truth to the important area of my mind. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Eph 4:1-17; Rm 8:7; Col 1:21
How were the Ephesians not to live?
How powerful is the influence of the mind?